How James Wilson made the difference for Manchester United against QPR

Old Trafford

James Wilson was the star of the show as Manchester United took three points against Queens Park Rangers on Saturday afternoon.

James Wilson struck deep into stoppage time against Queen’s Park Rangers with a goal that clinched a hard-fought 2-0 win for Manchester United at Loftus Road.

The 19-year-old had seen an initial effort saved by Rob Green, but was smartly on to the rebound to get on the senior scoresheet for the first time since the win over Hull City last May.

Louis van Gaal's side failed to register a shot on target during last weekend's 1-0 defeat at home to Southampton and again they did little to test the Premier League's most leaky defence throughout the first period.

The Dutchman introduced Marouane Fellaini at the interval and the Belgian netted his third goal of the season with 58 minutes on the clock.

Nevertheless, with QPR looking for a way back into the match in the closing stages, United needed an injury-time strike from Wilson to make absolutely sure of the points. 

The 19-year-old had created two gilt-edge opportunities on the counter for Radamel Falcao, before showing his on-loan teammate how to score in the closing stages of the match.

  Total ShotsShot Accuracy (%)GoalsKey PassesPass Accuracy (%)DribblesAerial Duels WonDispossessedMinutes Played
James Wilson 2 100 1 0 70 0 0 0 33

Having come on as a substitute in the 56th minute, the youngster had managed two attempts at goal - more than any other player managed during the same period - both of which were on target. His first saw him denied by Rob Green, but he made no mistake with the second opportunity.

On paper, his distribution leaves plenty to be desired. He may have completed just 70% of his attempted passes, but if you consider the fact that he misplaced just three of his attempts to find a teammate - including a delightful cross that fell inches away from Radamel Falcao - his apparent insufficiency in this department will be excused. 

After a truly impressive cameo, it is more than likely Wilson will continue to play a big role in Louis van Gaal's new-look system, not only due to the pace the movement he offers in the final third, but also because of contribution he is able to make in terms of goals and assists.

In his brief spell at Loftus Road, he offered significantly more than Falcao had been able to all game. He added pace and excellent movement in a impressive showing, rounded off by a composed strike at a time when QPR were threatening to come back into the match. He certainly looked more comfortable than his £265,000-a-week strike partner.

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